description [description]: Definition

An example ad showing where description text might appear

When to use

Required for each product


Follow these formatting guidelines to make sure that we understand the data that you're submitting. 

Type String (Unicode characters, some plain HTML*, Recommend: ASCII only) 
Limits 1–5000 characters
Repeated field No property
(What's this?)
Product.description, Type: Text 


*Malformed HTML (for example, non-closed tags) and unsafe features (such as JavaScript) are not allowed.


Status Examples
Supported (non-exhaustive list) strong, em, ul, ol, li, br, sub, sup, div, span, dl, dt, dd
Not supported Attributes of all tags
Unsafe tags, for example, 'style' or 'canvas'


File format Example value
Text feeds <em>Google Chromecast</em> was designed to discreetly connect to your TV.
  <li>Wirelessly Stream and Mirror Content</li>
  <li>Integrated HDMI Connector</li>
XML feeds <g:description>&lt;em&gt;Google Chromecast&lt;/em&gt; was designed to discreetly connect to your TV.
  &lt;li&gt;Wirelessly Stream and Mirror Content&lt;/li&gt;
  &lt;li&gt;Integrated HDMI Connector&lt;/li&gt;

To format your data for Content API, have a look at the Content API for Shopping.


Follow these guidelines to make sure that you submit high-quality data for your products.

Minimum requirements

These are the requirements that you'll need to meet to show your product. If you don't follow these requirements, we'll disapprove your product and let you know on the Diagnostics page of your Merchant Center account.

Note: If your description does not fit within the character limit, Google will truncate it to fit. You will receive a warning indicating that the description has been truncated.
  • Describe only the product itself. Don't describe other aspects like details about compatible products, accessories or other similar products available. Don't provide your business's history or policies.
  • Use professional and grammatically correct language. Correct grammar is easier to understand and gives you a more professional appearance, which can lead to more clicks. Also avoid gimmicky ways of drawing attention such as all caps, symbols and promotional text. Learn more about the editorial and professional requirements.
  • Don't use words from foreign languages, unless they're well understood such as a product with a foreign name or title. 
    • For example, the word 'sushi' is commonly understood outside of Japan.
    • Write foreign words using the alphabet of your target language. For example, avoid Japanese characters when targeting the United States. Letters with accents, like  'Les Clés' are allowed. 
    • Don't use foreign characters for gimmicky purposes. This technique is common in spam and untrustworthy product listings. For example: (ಠ_ಠ) 
  • Use XML entities or escaped characters instead of symbols. If you're submitting your product data in XML or JSON, and you need to include symbols, make sure that you follow the XML or JSON specification. So for XML, use XML entities such as &quot;. For JSON, use escape characters such as '\'. If you automatically encode your description, be careful not to encode it twice.
  • Don't include comparisons or details about other products. For example, don't mention things like 'even better than X'. Let customers research other products on their own. 
  • Don't include references to categorisation systems. For example, don't include 'Toys & Games > Toys > Dolls, Playsets & Toy Figures > Dolls'. Include this information using the google_product_category [google_product_category] or product_type [product_type] attribute. 
  • Don't include links to your shop or other websites. Include only a link to your product's landing page with the link [link] attribute.
  • Don't use capital letters for emphasis. Capitalised text is common in spam and untrustworthy product listings. You should still use capitalisation when it's appropriate, including for abbreviations, phone numbers, countries and currency. For example, ADHD, UNICEF, 1-555-CALL-NOW, UK and USD.
  • Don't include promotional text. Don't add information such as price, sale price, sale dates, delivery, delivery date, other time-related information or your company's name. Include this information with the other attributes such as sale_price [sale_price] or shipping [delivery].
  • Submit a description for each product. Products that don't include a value for the description [description] attribute will receive a warning and may experience limited performance. Similar products that include a description may be prioritised.

Best practices

These best practices can help you go beyond the basic requirements to optimise your product data for performance.

  • Be specific and accurate. The more specific you are in your description, the easier it is for users to identify the product that they are searching for.
  • List the most important details in the first 160-500 characters. You can include up to 5000 characters, but users will need to click to expand a longer description.
  • Include your product's most relevant features and visual attributes. Examples of types of information to include:
    • Size
    • Material
    • Intended age range
    • Special features
    • Technical specifications
    • Shape
    • Pattern
    • Texture
    • Design. For example, users can search for very specific visual terms like 'retractable ballpoint pens'.
    • Variants. List product-defining details like colour, size, age group, pattern, flavour or material.
    • Rich descriptions. Users find descriptions easier to read when they are well-formatted. Include control characters and HTML tags, such as line breaks, italics and bulleted lists to increase the readability of your description.

Additional guidelines

Review each section closely to determine whether the requirements apply to your country or product. If you don't follow requirements that apply to you, we'll disapprove your product and let you know in Diagnostics in your Merchant Center account.

Customised goods
  • Include a description of the product’s customisation details. For example, if a product can be engraved with text, add that information to the description.
Merchant-defined bundles and multipacks
  • Describe the entire product bundle or multipack. For example, for a bundle, you might include a description of everything sold together with the main product. For a multipack, you might include information about how many products are sold together.


Hardware and software
Product Google Chromecast
description [description] Chromecast is a media streaming device that plugs into the HDMI port on your TV. Simply use your mobile device and the TV that you already own to cast your favourite TV shows, movies, music, sports, games and more. Chromecast works with iPhone, iPad, Android, Mac, Windows and Chromebook.
Product Book, "How Google Works" by Eric Schmidt
description [description] "How Google works" is an entertaining, page-turning primer containing lessons that Eric and Jonathan learned as they helped build the company. The authors explain how technology has shifted the balance of power from companies to consumers, and that the only way to succeed in this ever-changing landscape is to create superior products and attract a new breed of multifaceted employees whom Eric and Jonathan dub "smart creatives". 
Products with variants
Product Pens, red ink
description [description] These pens feature a generous grip for comfortable writing and a retractable ballpoint that provides for easy ink flow. Red ink. 
Product Pens, black ink
description [description] These pens feature a generous grip for comfortable writing and a retractable ballpoint that provides for easy ink flow. Black ink. 
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